Mac Mini Purchase - Configuration Questions

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by griffithbuilt, Jan 1, 2009.

  1. griffithbuilt macrumors newbie

    Jan 1, 2009
    Hi all,

    It has been far too long since I have owned a Macintosh. I've had a whole bunch of Mac's in the past: SE, LC, Newton MP100, PowerMac 7200/120, G3/450, G4, and now finally an iPhone. I have a Lenovo X61 Tablet for my work and my wife has a HP laptop as well. We do not have a home computer right now and I really just want something to keep track of my photos, music and movies as well as allow GOOD (Read: Not running Opera on my Nintendo Wii) internet capabilities. DVD Authoring and home movie creation will be nice also with the iLife suite. So here's my thought, curious if I'm on track or way off...

    Mac Mini 2Ghz hooked up to our Toshiba Regza 40" 1080p flatscreen, Bluetooth Dongle and Apple Wireless Kbd/Mouse combo.

    The things I'm most curious about are as follows:

    Toshiba Regza 40" as display: I would probably go from the DVI to an HDMI input on the back of the display as the VGA port has proven itself to be suboptimal with this TV. What are the color calibration capabilities while using a 1080p TV with a Mac running Leopard?

    Wireless LAN: I will be connecting our Actiontec router to the Ethernet Port on the Mini. The router has a hub connected into it that is also attached to a Wii, PS3 & Netflix Roku box. I would guess that I may have to swap out this router for something that supports a wireless LAN (not sure if this router that my DSL ISP provided will do that), but are there any issues with hosting a network on the Mini that would be visible to the two wireless windows laptops? I know back in the day when I was running OS 9 & OS X I was able to host an appletalk network that was accessible and could access windows machines as well as SGI Irix boxes, but it has been quite some time.

    Storage: Western Digital 1TB hard drive to store music, movies, photos, etc. Backup to a secondary TB Drive stored offsite (At work). I would probably be connecting this drive via FireWire - would that be faster than the USB 2.0? I'd guess yes, but I'm not certain. Any issues with the access speed or other problems/speedbumps in running data off of this drive? I do have a 1080p capable HD Video camera, so some of the files on that are substantial in size.

    Printing: I currently have an HP All-in-one scanner/printer/fax machine that I'd like to get a bluetooth dongle for and be able to wirelessly print to using the bluetooth dongle that I will be using to also converse with the keyboard/mouse. Any hiccups in this plan? Things I need to check ahead of time? If not, I could always dig up my StyleWriter:apple:II ;-)

    iTunes Video Playback: Any difficulties playing back video in iTunes with the Mini?

    That's all I can think of right now.


  2. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Aug 13, 2006
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza

    Wait six days. You won't regret it. :p
  3. kastenbrust macrumors 68030


    Dec 26, 2008
    North Korea
    Wait 5 days until Macworld (The Expo for Apple Fans) has ended when Apple is likely to release a new Mac Mini (99%) and with higher specs and probably a lower price
  4. ENY7 macrumors newbie

    Jul 31, 2008
    Wait a week to see if possible Mac Mini's pan out at the next Macworld.

    As far as the Bluetooth there shouldn't be an issue.

    Firewire is significantly faster than USB in all accounts.

    Can't help you out with the networking and the external monitor sorry!

    Welcome back!
  5. griffithbuilt thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 1, 2009
    Yeah I'll wait...

    That was what I searched for right after I posted this thread...questions still apply though! Thanks!

  6. Tallest Skil macrumors P6

    Tallest Skil

    Aug 13, 2006
    1 Geostationary Tower Plaza
    1. You will need the Mini DisplayPort-DVI adapter and then a DVI-HDMI adapter or cable. You will need to have external speakers to get audio.

    2. Networking issues? None of which I know.

    3. Yes, FireWire is faster, but the new Mac Mini won't have it. Wait until it is released to see what ports you WILL have before buying a hard drive to go along with it.

    4. The hiccups would come from the printer not recognizing its own dongle, and not from the Mac Mini not recognizing the printer, I believe. Companies other than Apple have a hard time making hardware and software that work together...

    5. The new one will even be able to handle 1080p video with EASE, so not at all.
  7. griffithbuilt thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 1, 2009
    Thanks for all the responses. It'll be nice to watch the keynote!
  8. hhlee macrumors 6502

    May 19, 2005
    if there are no huge hardware changes (aside from spec upgrades), you're still on the right track.

    even with the current minis there are no issues in video playback.
  9. timestoby macrumors 6502

    Jun 10, 2007
    north devon,uk
    not to sure about mac mini playn 1080p,but ive read that using plex will handle might wonna read on the plex forums. 720p is easy tho.i mean you can really tell the diff between 1080p and 720p anyway,i cant anyway.

    but the new mac mini will handle it with ease since the gpu will do some of the work if not all,thats only if the specs are real that are going around.

    but if you want something to hold ur music,photos and hd movies you could try the western digital hd media streamer which is real cheap and it can handle 1080p with ease. think in america its around 130$ i know here in the uk its around 80£

    but then again youll prob want to surf on ur lcd,so the mini would be okay lol
  10. griffithbuilt thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jan 1, 2009
    Well too bad about the lack of a Mac Mini upgrade announcement. I went ahead and bought a Mini and I am really enjoying it. To follow up on answers to my own questions - DVI to HDMI Adapater works well and outputs 1080 native no problem. Beautiful actually.

    Still working on getting my files set up - got another TB drive so I have a backup solution now.

  11. BayouBengal macrumors regular

    Oct 29, 2008
    I just wouldn't be able to justify the cost of the mini since the specs have been unchanged for a long time with no nudge in price. Any of manufacturer either lowers the price or silently upgrades the specs. When Dell updates the processor in the Latitude line they don't have to call a press conference or have an "event":p
  12. heavymetal4god macrumors member


    May 22, 2008

    If the new mini's have no firewire, you have something better than them. :D
  13. Maxington macrumors 6502

    May 11, 2007
    Oshkosh, WI
    Ah welcome to the world of Apple.

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